Apple Sucks

I recently obtained a mid 2011 Mac Mini with an apparent hard drive failure. SSDs are cheap and this particular apple product is easy enough to service, so I thought I’d try to get it working again.

Thanks to iFixit. I was able to easily pull out the old 2.5” HDD and put in a trusty inland 1TB 2.5” SSD.

The highest version of MacOS that this machine runs is 10.13.6 High Sierra. The process of creating installation media is easy, if you own a mac. Here lies my first problem, I don’t. The work around is simple enough thanks to

I downloaded the ISO for High Sierra using the provided torrent, as the direct download from was on pace to take a little over 2 days to complete. After about 40 minutes, the torrent was complete. Using an application called TransMac TransMac I was able to write the ISO (renamed to DMG) to a 32GB flash drive to use as installation media.

It was finally time to boot. Holding down option while turning it on gave me the selection to boot from the USB drive. After waiting for a few minutes, the progress bar was at around 70%, the screen went black and came back to a blank white screen. Assuming it was just taking its time loading things in the background, I let it just sit. For over and hour. I eventually decided to call it quits. Resetting the PRAM (option Command + P + R) and trying again a few times, nothing was working. I was being left with this white screen of death.

Alright, something must be wrong with this image, perhaps it is too new, and I need to install an older version and upgrade it after it is installed. I tried downloading OS 10.10.5 Yosemite, the oldest OS version available on created installation media from it, and tried installing again. Same thing. 70% in and the white screen of death.

I then decided to boot using verbose mode (Command + V) during boot. This presented me with the Cli as it was trying to install the OS. Recording the screen to see what it said right before the screen blanked, it printed, “DSMOS has arrived”. DSMOS stands for Don’t Steal MacOS. Interesting this is meant to stop people from installing MacOS on any non-mac machine. Not sure if you remember, but this is a 2011 Mac Mini. Notably an Apple product.

Well, perhaps maybe these images that I’m using are not the correct images to be using. Thankfully there is an option to net boot these and reinstall the OS using mac servers (option + command + R) when booting. This greeted me with a spinning globe while in downloaded the internet recovery tool. Upon successful download, it began to boot into it. Again 70% in, White screen of death, leading me to believe that DSMOS is thinking that I am trying to boot into the Mac Internet recovery tool from a non-Apple product. They sure do make this difficult for legitimate users to use.

Thinking that perhaps the hardware in the mac is serialized somehow, I swapped out the SSD with the original HDD to see if it would boot into the internet recovery tool with the original hard drive installed to no avail. White screen of death.

I ran the Apple hardware diagnostics (D) while booting, and everything tested fine. I don’t know I’m about to give up.

Just out of curiosity, do you know what does boot on this? The windows 11 installer! And using some registry tweaks while installing allowed me to bypass the TMP and Secure Boot checks and actually install it to the now reinstalled SSD. Surprisingly it runs just fine. Gotta love Apple…

Advent of Code 2022

This year, I am excited to participate in Advent of Code for the first time. Advent of Code is an annual event in which participants are given a series of programming challenges to complete, with a new challenge being released each day leading up to Christmas. I am looking forward to stretching my problem-solving skills and learning new techniques through the challenges. I plan to complete the challenges using PHP and maybe even an occasional soulution in excel, and will be sharing my progress here. I am excited to see what the event has in store and can't wait to get started!